Zach is having problems with 4th grade Math. He's had 2 tests and received an F on both because he wasn't able to grasp number values above the 1,000 ranges. If he was given the number 29,457,863 and had to round it off to the value of the number in bold type, he couldn't do it. After two weeks of struggling, doing internet searches for worksheets, going over and over, number by number, time after time, with him, I think he's finally getting the idea but I'm becoming very frustrated with this.
First of all, why is he having problems with it now? He didn't seem to have a problem with the numbers up to 1,000 or if he did it didn't appear to me that he did. Were they supposed to have worked with the higher number values in the latter weeks of 3rd grade and didn't?
Secondly, I am allowing Zach to participate in an after school program where I understood they'd have extra help while doing their homework. I've since found out that it's possible that this may have been what this program was meant for but the truth is, it's not what it's being used for. I feel like it's more or less an after school babysitting service for the parents who work. There are 34 4th graders in his group and 2 teachers. They give help if they're asked but they don't make sure the students complete their assignments nor do they check their homework, so after Zach's first week of attending this program, where he completed his homework in the 1 1/2 hrs that he was there (the same homework that was taking up to 3 hrs for him to complete at home), but was bringing nothing home for me to go over with him, I called to request a conference with his teacher.
The result is, I am no closer to knowing what to do in order to help him than I ever was. I asked them about resources available for students who needed extra help in grasping things. There doesn't seem to be any. I told his teacher the problems he was having in Math, hell in a handbasket, she should have known that after the first F, but even after telling her that he was still having problems recognizing the higher number values, he made another F on another paper.
Am I supposed to be finding the ways to help him to understand this? I'm not a teacher, what am I supposed to do? I need to stay ahead of where he is to make sure I can keep him where he needs to be, how can I do this other than sitting in his class room? Where can I find more teaching materials? I've searched on line when I know what to look for but specific things aren't always easy to find.
I'm open to any and all suggestions here and I'd really appreciate your input.